Simon Mignolet says he is determined to become a leader in the Liverpool dressing room having signed a new long-term contract at Anfield.
Mignolet's role as Liverpool's top choice between the sticks has frequently come under scrutiny since his arrival from Sunderland in 2013, but manager Jurgen Klopp has placed his faith in the Belgium international, whose contract extension was confirmed by the club on Monday 18 January.
The 27-year-old is grateful for the increased responsibility handed to him by the Merseyside club and now hopes to continue establishing himself as a senior presence in the locker room.
"I know signing a new contract comes with new responsibility," he told the club's official website. "I'm getting older as well and coming into the years where people would say those are the years a 'keeper is at his best. I know with a long-term contract, you get more responsibility – and I want to take up that role because I'm the sort of character that wants to be a leader, wants to speak in the dressing room and wants to help the defence.
"It's an incentive to work hard in that sense, to be more commanding and to be a leader to help the team out whenever needed. I'll try to work hard together with the goalkeeping coach and staff here, who are behind me and have given their confidence with a new contract. I would like to thank them for that – but you can't really do that with words, you have to do that with performances on the pitch. And that's what I'll try to show."
Mignolet hopes to help Liverpool's younger players when they arrive at Anfield, in addition to his fellow Belgians, with countrymen Divock Origi and Christian Benteke joining up with the squad last summer.
"Yes, this year a couple of Belgians have arrived and I have helped them settle in. I have helped them be part of Liverpool and part of such a club. I'm getting older every day and more experienced, and I can help the young lads out in those kinds of ways. Signing a new contract and long-term deal makes it a bigger responsibility than it was already – you have to take it and embrace it and use it for the better of the whole team."